The MacInness Legacy Series
In 1692, an innocent man accused of witchcraft hangs in Salem, Massachusetts. His death reignites a deadly feud between the descendants of two ancient Scottish clans—MacGow and MacInness, which leaves the MacInness clan descendants cursed. Any man who weds a MacInness is destined to an early death. The MacInnesses have one century to lift the curse and reflect it back upon Clan MacGow. One hundred years later, triplet sisters separated in childhood, are being drawn back to Salem. The have three months to refine their unearthly talents of fire, sight, and healing, and break the deadly curse…or lose the men they love forever.
The MacInness Legacy
Genre: Historical Paranormal Romance
Publisher: True Airspeed Press, LLC
Date of Publication: June 27, 2014
Number of pages: 279
Cover Artist: Su Kopil
From best-selling author Julie Moffett comes THE FIREWEAVER, the first book in a historical paranormal romance series about sister witches written in conjunction with her own sister, Sandy Moffett.
Bridget Goodwell is the daughter of one of Salem’s most prominent Congregationalist ministers. Although Bridget is almost twenty-one years of age and long past the prime age of marriage, in three months time she will finally wed Peter Holton, a wealthy law student from a respectable family. Bridget’s future seems secure and bright. Except for the fact that Bridget is hiding a terrible secret. She is able to set things on fire by willing it so. All of her life she’s successfully hid her unnatural ability from family and friends. But just three weeks before her wedding, her secret is threatened when her childhood nemesis and first true love, Benjamin Hawkes, sails back into town with trouble on his mind.
Excerpt The Fireweaver:
Salem Village, Massachusetts
October 31, 1692
Priscilla Mary Gardener was about to hang.
After twenty-one years of life, it would end here on Gallows Hill, not far from her home, with a rope around her neck and a suffocating black wool hood draped over her face.
How ironic that death would embrace her now. Blessed with health, youth, and vibrancy, she had never given herself leave to contemplate her own demise. But during these past two weeks she had been forced to ponder death and the fragility of life. She did not want to die. Even as she stood precariously over a rickety trap door with a noose around her neck, she still dared to hope there was a possibility she might be saved.
But it was not to be.
It saddened her that not one of her neighbors or friends came forward to speak for her, to challenge the preposterous claims that had been made against her. Not one raised their voice in protest against her execution. She was alone and condemned. The thick rope weighed on her neck, chafing her skin. Her wrists were tied behind her back and rubbed raw. At first, her arms had ached fiercely, but now only a dull pain throbbed. Her legs were unbound, but she feared moving even a breadth lest the trapdoor open and hasten her demise.
Priscilla drew in a painful but steadying breath, and reflected upon her life, one that had once been blessed and good. She’d had a husband who had loved her, and a mother and father who had adored and sheltered her. As death neared, she saw that little else mattered. Breathing became more difficult beneath the hood. Cold sweat trickled down her temples and neck, causing her to shudder uncontrollably. Perhaps, if God were truly merciful, she would suffocate beneath the black hood before they ever got on with the hanging. If not, she prayed her death would be quick and clean. She had no wish to suffer a long and agonizing death while the people she had known all her life looked on, wondering, whispering.
Priscilla supposed it was almost time now. A man on the scaffold said something, but she couldn’t make out the words through the hood. She was no longer certain if she were breathing. She felt light-headed, weak, as if she had already taken leave of her body. A hand pressed into the small of her back and she heard more mumbling. Then the noose tightened around her neck just as the trap door opened. Priscilla felt herself falling and then yank to a stop as pain exploded in her head. The pain passed and there was nothing but a suffocating stillness.
Was she dead?
Without warning, the chilling darkness turned to light, shocking her senses. When her vision cleared, Priscilla could see a body swaying from the gallows a short distance away, the horrid black hood still in place. It seemed so insignificant—a tiny black dot against the enormous gray-tinged skyline. Yet as she watched the body sway, she sensed something was not right. Inexplicably her sight became riveted on the black hood as if beneath the coarse, woolen fabric lay the answer to her death. Somehow she willed her spirit forward until she almost touched the hood. Her hand trembled as her fingers brushed against the coarse fabric.
Did a dead person’s hand still tremble?
Steeling herself, she yanked off the hood in one swift motion.
Priscilla woke in terror, screaming her husband’s name. Thrashing out, she reached across the bed, seeking the warmth and comfort of his body. For a moment, poised precariously between a dream and reality, she felt her husband beside her, solid and familiar. She could even smell the oatmeal soap that had stubbornly clung to the rough but steady hands of a master carpenter.
She squeezed her eyes shut and crushed a pillow to her chest, clinging to the memory and scent of him. But the tighter she clung, the looser her hold became, and his memory slipped from her grasp as did the last vestiges of her dream.
She opened her eyes, alone in the bed. A profound sorrow clutched at her heart, twisting and turning until she could bear no more.
The MacInness Legacy
Genre: Historical Paranormal Romance
Publisher: True Airspeed Press, LLC
Date of Publication: July 6, 2014
Number of pages: 300
Cover Artist: Su Kopil
The Seer is the second book in The MacInness Legacy Series, written by award-winning sisters Sandy and Julie Moffett. The story garnered Sandy a Lories Award for Best New Paranormal Author.
After an innocent man accused of witchcraft hangs in 1692 Salem, his death reignites a deadly feud between the descendants of two ancient Scottish clans—MacGow and MacInness. The peaceful MacInness descendants are left tragically cursed. Any man who weds a MacInness is now destined to an early death. The MacInnesses have one century to lift the curse and reflect it back upon Clan MacGow. One hundred years later, triplet sisters separated in childhood are being drawn back to Salem. They have three months to refine their unearthly talents of fire, sight, and healing, and break the deadly curse…or lose the men they love forever.
Alexandra Gables needs no man to run her life. Educated, witty, and wealthy, she is the only child in a family with a long line of prominent scientists. Despite her gender, Alexandra intends to continue that heritage and let no man stand in her way. But her father, anxious for grandchildren, teams up with an old friend whose equally stubborn and brilliant son, Pierce Williams, has no time for a frivolous woman to slow down his life. When Alexandra is sent to Salem to help the elder Williams catalogue and sketch a scientific collection for the Royal Society of London, she has no idea that she is being dangled as marriage material for Pierce. Both are firmly determined to ignore each other, but Alexandra is drawn to Pierce’s quick wit, irresistible charm, and enviable engineering skill. However, close encounters with Pierce trigger an increase in the strange prophetic visions she has had all her life––visions that have no scientific basis or explanation. When a vision reveals the destruction of a ship Pierce designed, built, and will sail on, she must risk a deepening love for Pierce against the loss of his life and all her future dreams.
Excerpt The Seer:
Salem, Massachusetts, May 1792
“’Tis a bleak morn to be enterin’ this witchin’ town,” a grizzled sailor mumbled as he assisted a young woman into the unsteady longboat.
Cold, sticky air ripe with rolling fog enveloped the seas abeam Salem, a place haunted by its persecution of witches nearly one hundred years ago. Though infamous in history, the thriving seaport now drew the educated and adventurous. Alexandra Gables, debarking the schooner Defiant, was no exception.
“Surely you do not believe in such endowed humans as witches,” Alexandra countered, mildly amused that people still maintained such unenlightened beliefs. “Even Salem has professed shame for the hangings. I do recollect they offered legal apologies and restitution to families of the victims.”
The sailor’s sun-hardened face, days distant from the blade of a good razor, crinkled in doubt. “Me mariner ears hear many a tale, ma’am. But no doubtin’ by me, every tale entwines a true fact. There be witches in Salem.”
She nodded politely and glanced up at the Defiant, searching for signs of her tiny companion. Crimson spears of sunrise cast a reddish glow on the fog-draped schooner. A truly enchanting morning, if she allowed such a persuasion. But enchanted was not the word she chose.
The ocean rolled gently beneath her feet inducing flutters in an already tentative stomach. She stepped toward the stern of the longboat thankful that the trip to shore was a brief one. She settled near the coxswain and tucked the fullness of her cotton skirt and petticoat discreetly onto her lap. Above, a covered birdcage attached to a rope descended slowly from the schooner deck. An oarsman handed over the cage and placed it beside her on the seat plank.
“Wha’ creature ye ha’ in there, Mistress Gables?” the Scottish born sailor asked, puzzled by the cage. “It no’ moves like a bird.”
“You are most clever, sir. ’Tis not a bird, but a creature I call Newton. He resembles the fabled companion Black Sam used to keep.”
The man’s eyes widened at the pirate’s name as he took a seat facing her and set his oar. She easily noted his desire to hear more. “I see you are familiar with Black Sam’s exploits.”
The deep-voiced coxswain behind her bellowed, “Aye, Mistress. Any sailor worth ’is salt has heard of ’im and ’is stormy demise.”
He switched his attention to squeezing in the last of the passengers and casting off from the schooner. Not until the oars dipped cleanly into Salem Harbor and he had steered clear of the ship, did he lean toward Alexandra again. “I ne’er heard sailors speak of any animal on ’is ship.”
“Not just any animal, but a small, rugged, resourceful creature,” she replied. “Tales say ’tis why Black Sam kept him. He discovered the creature when filling water casks at anchorage in Hispaniola. Some claim the two locked stares not sure who appeared more fearsome.”
The coxswain and oarsman stared with curiosity at the covered cage. As though in response, Newton shifted in his cage, banging his tail against the thin metal. The men jumped, and Alexandra fought to hide her amusement. With dramatic hesitation, she lifted ever so slightly the edge of Newton’s cover.
Orange-brown eyes set in a rough jumble of green scales glared out at the men. Like a true thespian, Newton inflated his scaled beard to display a row of short spikes. The men gasped and she lowered the cover.
“That be a devil’s creature,” the oarsman puffed and glanced suspiciously at her fiery hair she had properly tucked beneath a hat.
“’Tis simply a reptile,” she countered. “A French philosopher traveling from Cap-Haïtien gave this specimen to my father.”
A sudden shift in temperature brought the discussion to a halt. A quiet foreboding made its presence known in the foggy shroud. Every rhythmic slap of the oars into the harbor brought the longboat closer to shore and deepened her building unease. She knew of no possible reason for these dark feelings. Past scientific forays with her father into the western woods of New York and the wilds of Nova Scotia had offered far more danger than this trip to Salem.
Strange, but some internal voice foretold that the danger didn’t arise from bears, snakes, or Indians; it emanated from someplace far less obvious, from the very essence of Salem—or even from her own soul.
The MacInness Legacy
Genre: Historical Paranormal Romance
Publisher: True Airspeed Press, LLC
Date of Publication: July 14, 2014
Number of pages: 305
Cover Artist: Su Kopil
From best selling, award winning author Julie Moffett comes the third book in a historical paranormal romance series about sister witches written with her sister, Sandy Moffett. This book was nominated for a PRISM and a HOLT.
One hundred years after the witch trials in 1792 Salem Massachusetts:
Gillian is the daughter of a well-known Salem physician Zachariah Saunders and his wife, Mary. Years ago Gillian’s father was accused of improper medical behavior, and the family was ostracized to the nearby town of Gloucester. There Gillian became her father’s apprentice, learning all she could about medicine, botany and the healing arts. She was frightened, but intrigued, when she discovered she had an unusual ability to heal small, wounded animals by simply touching them. Her strange ability is put to the test when a young and handsome doctor is dragged to her door near death. Gillian makes him well again, but in the process falls hopelessly in love. It is this love that returns her to Salem and brings her face to face with the mother and sisters she never knew existed. Now she must overcome her past and help her newfound family work to lift a century-old curse before it destroys the men they love.
Excerpt The Healer:
The sea lured Spencer Reeves like a siren calling to her lover.
He smiled in response as his small vessel, a skiff named the Rosemary, swept atop the glossy waves, leaving Salem Harbor behind. A strong, whipping breeze blew across the water, carrying the faint scents of sea salt and cod while a brilliant orange sky encompassed the New England coast in a spectacular sunset. He took a deep breath of air, lifting his face to the wind and embracing the stinging October chill.
“There’s nothing like a sail on a brisk autumn eve, is there, Spence?”
Spencer turned to his friend Charles Harrington, who sat lounging back against the gunwale, his legs stretched out in front of him. “Nothing. It’s the perfect end to an otherwise long day. All too soon enough we’ll have to dock the skiff for the winter. But not yet.”
Grinning, Charles pulled a small flask out of his breast pocket, popped it open, and took a long drink. He handed it to Jonathan Duttridge, the third member of their small crew, who took a deep pull and passed it to Spencer.
Spencer declined. “No. Someone has to remain in full control of his faculties in order to sail us back home and not on into Gloucester.”
Charles frowned. “Always the proper physician. Must you be incessantly wed to your profession?”
“Only when I sail…and, of course, when I perform surgery instead of leaving it to an incompetent barber. I have no intention of going as far as Gloucester this eve.”
Jonathan snorted in disapproval. “What would be wrong with a trip to Gloucester? I met a pleasant young lady there once.”
“Pleasant, indeed.” Charles chortled. “Need I remind you, we were at a house of ill repute? I’m sure she’ll remember to be pleasant if you come calling again with coin.”
Jonathan pursed his lips and Charles snatched the flask from him, taking another swallow. “Come on, Spence, if you refuse to partake in the spirits, then let’s see how fast this lady can go.”
Rising to the challenge, Spencer adjusted the sail and angled it into the wind. The skiff picked up speed, gliding deftly across the water.
As Salem became a dot on the horizon, Spencer felt the tension of the day released. He also had a long, though productive day. His father had personally commended him on the excellent sutures he had made on the tiny hand of three-year old Mary Brewer. He had correctly diagnosed and treated old Sam Forsythe for a mild case of gout. His own confidence as a physician was growing daily, as was the trust of the patients he treated while apprenticing with his father. But as his patient list and the number of people depending on him grew, Spencer found that he recently spent more time worrying about his work and less time visiting with friends and reinvigorating his body and mind. Today he had decided to ignore those needs no more. He’d sought out his friends, and now they were all reaping the rewards of a revitalizing sail.
They chatted companionably until dusk deepened. Spencer slowed the skiff and had Charles lit the small lantern that sat wedged between two wooden planks at the front of the bow. The light cast ghostly shadows over the men.
“Take a look at that, would you?” Jonathan pointed toward land, where a few scattered lights blinked along the shoreline.
“It looks like a cottage.” Charles came to stand beside Jonathan. “How far are we from Gloucester?”
“A good distance yet.” Spencer squinted. “It’s rather peculiar, but the structure seems to be neither in Salem or in Gloucester, but somewhere in between.”
“How odd,” Jonathan murmured. “I didn’t know anyone lived out this far.”
“That’s because it doesn’t house human inhabitants.” Charles took a swig and laughed.
Jonathan sniggered. “Then what exactly does the cottage house?”
Charles waved his arm in a grand gesture, and spoke in an eerie dramatic voice. “A small, but malevolent coven of witches. Beautiful, alluring witches, but evil just the same. Spence, what do you think?”
Spencer watched the dim lights wink and glow in a fascinating pattern. Someone had placed candles in the windows, as if beckoning to strangers. A chill skittered up his spine, raising the hairs on his arms and the back of his neck.
“Frankly, I think we should beach Charles here. Let him visit the cottage. Maybe the witches can cure him of his unremitting obsession with women.”
“Ha! No thank you, Spence. That’s one obsession I prefer not to be cured of, thank you very much. I rather think we should leave you there, Spence, so you can have a life outside your respectable but utterly tedious practice.”
Spencer tipped his head. “Tedious or not, I assure you, my life is quite full. Besides, am I not partaking of some leisurely activity at this very moment? Although some might question if being with you two truly counts as leisure.”
“Oh, it’s leisure all right.” Charles slid backward, his hip thudding against the hull as the skiff picked up speed from a sudden gust of wind. “Is not our company much sought after in Salem? Are we not fortunate to have a lady such as the Rosemary at our disposal?”
Spencer grinned. “On the last point I shall not disagree.”
“Speaking of ladies, Charles.” Jonathan swiped the flask from Charles’ grasp. “What’s this I hear about you being caught with your hands up Anna Wendall’s skirts?”
“It was an accident, I swear.” Charles lifted his hands innocently. “We were taking a stroll when she tripped and toppled into my arms. Her considerable weight caught me off-balance and we both fell to the ground. In my haste to help her up, I became entangled in her skirts. It’s not my fault her derrière was exposed to several passersby. I’ve been told it was quite a spectacle.”
“Her derrière, or your hands extracting themselves from her considerable flesh?” Spencer asked dryly.
“Very amusing.” Charles pressed his hand in an exaggerated fashion against his chest. “You wound me by disparaging my honorable intentions toward Mistress Wendall.”
Jonathan chuckled. “That’s a damn fine accounting of what happened, Charles, and I’d stand by it, if I were you. Especially when word of the unfortunate incident reaches her father. After all, most of Salem knows that you are constantly on the lookout for dastardly ways to take a quick peek beneath the skirts of any young lady.”
They all laughed and further debated the finer points of Anna Wendall’s derrière until an abrupt gust of wind caused the boat to lurch to one side. Concerned with the boom swinging, Spencer yelled, “Watch your heads.
“A storm seems to be brewing.” The wind whipped against the sail. “Where in the hell did it come from? We’d better head back to Salem.” He worked the tiller and sail as the vessel began to roll drunkenly from side to side.
“Would it not be more prudent to go on to Gloucester?” Charles yelled over the howl of the wind.
“If my calculations are correct, we are still about halfway between each town.” Spencer slid two steps to his left. “The storm seems to be coming out of the north from Gloucester. If we head back for Salem, perhaps we can outrun it.”
A jagged flash of lightning lit up the sky, leaving a trail of crackling sparks in its wake. Thunder boomed around them as the sky opened up and rain poured down in untamed fury. His view of the shore and horizon rapidly diminished.
Spencer clung to the wood rail, his skin tingling, his breath coming in shallow, fast gasps. “We have to put her into the waves or she’ll capsize. Help me get her hard aport.”
Charles and Jonathan scrambled to aid him, but a wave crashed into the craft, slamming Charles’ head into the boom. He nearly slid overboard, but Spencer dragged him back by the collar of his shirt and dumped him on the deck. Charles sat up, rubbing his skull. Thunder boomed again, this time so violently that even the skiff shuddered.
“Hell and damnation!”
They brought down the sail and Spencer fought with the tiller. His fingers slipped on the wood, and he narrowed his eyes against the onslaught of blinding rain. Spencer knew they were in imminent danger of capsizing.
Jonathan screamed. “Look out!”
Spencer glanced over his shoulder, his eyes widening at the enormous wall of water coming toward them. The wave slammed into them, crushing the boat like a toy. The skiff disintegrated beneath his feet, and the water reached up and yanked him under the white foam.
With barely a gulp of air in his lungs, Spencer flailed about, kicking hard against the undertow that threatened to drag him to his death. His right leg tangled in a rope, twisting his ankle and slamming it against something hard. Hot pain shot up from his foot along the right side of his body. In a moment of startling clarity, Spencer realized he was on the brink of death.
His last thought before blackness enveloped him was not one of despair, but one of hope that at least his friends would make it to safety.
Salem’s Academy for Ladies
Genre: Historical paranormal romance
Publisher: True Airspeed Press, LLC
Date of Publication: August 5, 2014
Number of pages: 108
Cover Artist: Su Kopil
Multi-award winning author Sandy Moffett brings to life historical Salem in this first novella of a series.
The Salem witch trials may be a hundred years past, but Constance Sedgewick and her two aunts run Salem’s Academy for Young Ladies, where any rumor of strange occurrences could ruin their excellent reputation. So when pictures start falling off walls, dishware unexplainably cracks, and odd things start to happen, Constance discovers her strong, arcane powers are taking on a life of their own. When her aunts share the cause, Constance isn’t sure she can withstand the cure.
Salem, Massachusetts 1790
Constance Sedgewick stood in the front hall of Salem’s Academy for Young Ladies considering the repercussions if she summarily changed Phoebe’s mother into a mute.
“Phoebe has no need for learning numbers,” the woman huffed. “Such foolish knowledge wastes her precious time.”
Constance crossed her arms. “On the contrary, I have not found it so.”
“Humph, why, you haven’t even been able to secure a husband.”
A fiery ire rose from within and might well have exploded forth had a crashing thud not sounded down the hall. Constance whirled to see the damaged portrait of her father lying askew on the floor. The air sizzled with magic. Aunt Gwendolyn, blessed with frequently erratic spells, must have overheard the unkind comment.
Constance, doing her best to control her true emotions, drew a long breath and turned back to Phoebe’s mother.
“I do recall your family operates the English Goods store. Have you ever considered, heaven forbid, what would happen if your husband should become incapacitated? Who would calculate the shop finances?”
The woman straightened proudly. “My son will run the business someday.”
“Your son is barely nine years of age. What if this sad event happened tomorrow?”
“How dare you suggest such a thing.”
Constance gently put a hand on the woman’s arm and guided her to the front door. “Think of Phoebe’s knowledge as insurance in times of difficulty. Do you wish a sharper to steal your business blind because you lack knowledge of numbers?”
The woman, apparently recognizing the attempt to remove her from the manor house, firmly planted herself across the threshold. “I see the merit in your point, but she must be prepared for society and a proper husband. Attention is required in social skills, music, and the arts. Could you not allow her to concentrate more on those talents?”
“We treat all our young ladies equally. And I do believe my aunts do an admirable job of teaching the arts and personal etiquette. We produce well-rounded young ladies here. But if you think Phoebe will be better served at another establishment, I will gladly assist with her transfer.”
Phoebe’s mother grew pale. “But there are no others in town with your reputation.”
“Then, we shall be pleased to keep her as a student. You must understand, though, we are quite set in giving our young ladies a thorough education.”
Constance stepped away from the woman and took hold of the sturdy wooden door. While smiling pleasantly, she slowly moved her hand, hidden behind the door, in a shooing motion.
“I must get back to my students. If you have any further concerns, feel free to return after lessons today.” She swung the door shut as Phoebe’s mother stood with a surprised and puzzled expression.
The poor woman probably wondered how she had moved the few feet from the threshold onto the porch. Constance giggled at the image. Oh, the small pleasures of witchcraft. On occasion it posed a great burden, but other times proved a blessing.
About Julie Moffett:
Julie Moffett is the award-winning author of fourteen published novels in the genres of historical, paranormal fantasy, and time travel romances, and action/adventure mysteries.
She grew up as a military brat (Air Force) and has traveled extensively. Her more exciting exploits include attending Kubasaki High School in Okinawa, Japan, backpacking around Europe and Scandinavia for several months, a year-long college graduate study in Warsaw, Poland and a wonderful trip to Scotland and Ireland where she fell in love with castles, kilts and brogues.
Julie has a B.A. in Political Science and Russian Language from Colorado College, a M.A. in International Affairs from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and is nearly finished with her M.Ed from Liberty University in Virginia. Able to speak Russian and Polish, she worked as a journalist for the international radio station, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Washington, D.C. for eleven years, publishing hundreds of articles. She now works as a proposal writer and research advisor for a defense contractor in the Washington, D.C. area.
Julie is a single mom with two sons, who keep her quite busy. She belongs to Romance Writers of America and Washington Romance Writers where she served six years on the organization’s Board of Directors. She was also the Market News Columnist and Feature’s Editor for the organization’s monthly newsletter, Update, for eleven years.
About Sandy Moffett:
I write fast-paced stories full of adventure, unique characters, mystery and suspense. I've published two novels with Kensington Publishing Corporation and have placed and won writing contests as both a published and unpublished author (ex. National Reader’s Choice finalist (published), RWA Golden Heart (finalist). I am a member of Mystery Writers of America and several national and local writing organizations.
I'm a hydrogeologist by training with an M.S. in geological sciences and have taken additional engineering graduate coursework. I've taught at a university, worked on a project for the Air Force Flight Test Center, worked as a design engineer for a civil engineering firm, and have done computer modeling and field studies as a hydrogeologic consultant. I've studied in England and Italy, traveled to South Africa, Egypt, and South America, and still travel to places of interest all over the world so I can make my stories richer.
Website (writing as Sandy Parks): http://www.sandyparksauthor.com/